A subsea power cable is exposed to electrical, thermal and mechanical effects during its lifetime.
The power transfer capacity of a high voltage power cable is limited by high-temperature regions that can damage the cable insulation. Degradation in the quality of insulation can lead to the occurrence of partial discharges and ultimately a complete breakdown of the insulation. Damage due to external factors can also pose a risk to the cable network.
In a subsea environment it is challenging to monitor the day-to-day health and to detect unexpected events within the power distribution infrastructure. Installing distributed fibre optic based monitoring technologies for continuous monitoring of cables and substation assets allows the operator to make informed decisions about operation & maintenance and offers multiple technical and commercial advantages.
Silixa’s cutting edge range of distributed fibre optic sensing technologies, including temperature (ULTIMA™ DTS and XT-DTS™) and acoustic (iDAS™) monitoring, coupled with the company’s integrated approach secures reliable asset monitoring.
Data from the DTS can be used to provide alarms directly for situations such as hot spot formation or rapid temperature change within the cable. Additionally, the temperature information from the DTS can be used as an input to a load management system, utilising a Real Time Thermal Rating model to predict the future safe load capacity of a cable and identify bottlenecks within the system.
The application of Silixa’s iDAS technology can allow the operator to listen for the sound created by partial discharge it also provides the capability detect unplanned activity on the network’s critical transmission links. Early warning of such events allows the operator to react quickly and take either preventative or mitigation measures.
With our range of HMI and SCADA solutions, an operator can integrate an intelligent asset monitoring platform across their wide area network. Such solutions enable seamless integration with existing DCS systems.